c1935 Admiral Pipon Commander Gibraltar Visitors Book


A unique c1935 leatherbound Visitors Book that belonged to Rear Admiral James Murray Packenham Pipon KBE CMG MVO when he was the Commander of His Majesty’s Dockyard in Gibraltar. It contains the signatures and names of ships of many important people. It comes together with his wife’s Visitors book and her 1932 Dinner planner.
The main book is beautifully made with a deep blue leather binding and the title in gold letters REAR ADMIRAL AND MRS PIPON. Inside the gold edge pages are divided into 3 columns with the DATE, NAME and ADDRESS. The book starts on 15th May 1935 and continues till 17th May 1937. The names are mostly of high ranking officers of the Royal Navy, the Army and Royal Air Force. There are also civilian dignitaries and even a Mr Charles Chaplin who was on board the sailing yacht Pansy. The ship’s names include: HMS Rodney, HMS Hood, HMS Renown, HMS Devonshire, HMS Despatch, HMS Douglas, HMS London, HMS Resolution, HMS Ramillus, HMS Queen Elizabeth, HMS Searcher, HMAS Brisbane, HMS Arethusa, HMS Ajax, HMS Basilisk, HMS Revenge, HMS Bulldog, USS Arkansas, HMS Anthony, HMS Valiant, HMS Codrington, HMS Glorious, HMS Harrier and many others, often with several of the given ship’s officers signing in. In the case of HMS Hood, there are some 30 officers signing the book as a result of repairs carried out in Gibraltar when HMS Renown collided with HMS Hood on the 23rd January 1935. They were still visiting by the end of May 1936.
The second book is marked VISITORS and bound in a burgundy red brown leather covers. It belonged to Pipon’s wife the Hon. Bertha Louise Victoria Lopes. It lists the names and addresses of civilian visitors to the Plymouth address from 1923 and then jumping to the 1950s. The final book, again in black leather and is not titled. The inside is a diary of hosted dinners from 1925 in Paris, where Murray Pipon was the British Naval Attache and then jumping to 1932 at the Royal Naval Barracks at Devonport, Plymouth, where Pipon was chief of staff to the Commander-in-Chief, Plymouth and commanded the battleship Royal Sovereign in 1930–1932.
All 3 books are in good clean condition and constitute an impressive collection of signatures.
James Murray Pakenham Pipon KBE CMG MVO (1882 - 1971) was a Royal Navy officer who served in World War I and, after being recalled to active duty in 1940, World War II.
After World War I, he served as naval attaché in Paris, France, chief of staff to the Commander-in-Chief, Plymouth and commanded the battleship Royal Sovereign in 1930–1932. His last appointment before retiring in 1936 was as Rear-Admiral-in-Command and Admiral-superintendent, HM Dockyard, Gibraltar. When WWII started he was appointed Senior British Naval Officer, Suez Canal Area. He was based, at Ismailia in Egypt. His wife Bertha Louise was the second daughter of Henry Lopes, 1st Baron Roborough and Lady Alberta Louisa Florence Edgcumbe (second daughter of William Edgcumbe, 4th Earl of Mount Edgcumbe and Lady Katherine Elizabeth Hamilton, the fourth daughter of James Hamilton, 1st Duke of Abercorn).
Size main book: 31 x 24 x 4 cm (12 ¼ x 9 ½ x 1 5/8 inches)
Weight: 4216g